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Rays system continue to shine in Baseball America’s midseason update

Tampa Bay Rays v Cincinnati Reds Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images

Baseball America has released their midseason Top 100 prospect rankings and several Rays have surged to the top of the list.

Overall, the Rays placed 6 players among the top 100 with 3 slotting in among the top 28.

Rays in BA’s Top 100:

2. RHP Shane Baz
18. RHP Taj Bradley
28. CIF Curtis Mead
61. OF Josh Lowe
80. SS Carson Williams
81. INF Xavier Edwards

The number of Rays in the top 100 is very encouraging. At least two from the list are set to exceed their prospect status (Shane Baz and Josh Lowe), but the Rays continue to churn out some of the game’s top prospects.

Since being acquired by the Rays in the deal that sent Chris Archer to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Tyler Glasnow and Austin Meadows, Shane Baz has developed into the best pitching prospect in all of baseball. Possessing some of the best pure stuff, Baz has been able to harness his explosive arsenal with elite control. This has enabled him to use all of his pitches to good effect.

Taj Bradley and Curtis Mead are the two breakout stories in the system. Bradley has long been a work in progress for the organization, as the team selected in him the 2018 draft when he had just turned 17 years old. A low 90’s fastball has blossomed into upper 90’s velocity, along with a plus slider. He is still working on a change-up and curveball, and should these secondary pitches continue to develop his ceiling is that of the next Rays ace.

Mead was acquired thanks to a Rays 40-man roster crunch that forced the Rays to deal pitcher Christopher Sanchez for a lottery ticket. Mead was relatively unknown at the time, but since joining the Rays organization, all he has done is excel offensively. Baseball America rates his hit and power tools at 60.

For their respective performances, both Mead and Bradley have been selected to represent the team in the annual Futures Game, which showcases some of the best prospects from each team in baseball.

Meanwhile, Carson Williams, the Rays 1st round selection in the 2021 draft is an all around terrific player who rates average to above average all areas of the game. The 19 year old shortstop currently sit in Low-A, after a solid full year as a professional.

Xavier Edwards rounds out the Rays on the rankings. The slap hitting infielder has developed more power in his swing in 2020, currently slugging .489 with 4 HR in Triple-A; Edwards had slugged .389 with 1 HR over his previous three minor league seasons.